23 July, 2008

too many doping stories

I would have preferred to post fewer doping stories.  But the stories are getting written because athletes are getting caught.  I have no idea if this means that the testing is better or that these riders aren't too swift.  I'd like to believe the former. 

Doping is with us.  With us because whenever there's competition, people want an edge.  This isn't just sport, but life.  Enron, Halliburton, Keating, the list of cheats goes on and on.

I agree with the contention of a number of cyclists that the reason for the positive tests is that people have decided that, at least when it comes to bike racing in France, something should be done to rid the sport of doping.   

Doping exists in other sports.  I did a cursory search and found two articles about steroid use in football.  One is from 1986 and the NY Times.  The second from 1990 and Sports Illustrated.  Both have Bill Fralic as a quoted expert.  When you read the two stories, you'd think they were written at the same time.  As a story, it had little traction.

Considering how many stories Sports Illustrated has run glorifying college football teams that bulk up, it's hard not to see them turning a blind eye in many situations.

But all of journalism might have helped advance doping as a means to success.  There are too many "win or else," "failure is not an option" titles and stories.  I guess getting busted for doping is the "or else," or is somehow not failing.

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